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tv   News 4 Today at 5  NBC  March 13, 2012 5:00am-6:00am EDT

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obama made a rather surprise appearance. there he is. the portuguese water dog is used to taking center stage. last month he surprised tourist in the white house by showing up for an unannounced meet and greet in the blue room. he also showed up in a skit with the first lady and late night host jimmy fallon. he's getting big. almost as big as jimmy fallon. >> no one's mad at him. he's allowed to steal the spotlight, he's so cute. >> getting beyond cute, large. can large be cute? >> yeah. for a dog. >> okay. stay with us now. "news4 today" continues at 5:00 a.m. >> we are following breaking news out of afghanistan where militants have struck back after a u.s. soldier's shooting rampage. good morning, i'm joe krebs. >> i'm eun yang. welcome to "news4 today" for this tuesday, march 13, 2012. we'll take a live look at 5:00
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a.m. 61 balmy degrees this time of the year. a little sprinkle of rain this morning. tom, is it going to last all day? >> just off and on this morning. we may get thunderstorms developing by later this afternoon. just a small chance. i don't think they're going to be severe thunderstorms if they do get going. right now we are dealing with the aftermath of passing showers that have been moving through the past 12 hours. you see the sky is clearing far to our west. right now where you see the area in color in the green, that is rain. we are getting some of this light rain right now just to our south and east. temperatures are in the mid 50s. around the metro area, upper 50s to near 60 degrees. all around the region, upper 50s to near 60. west virginia, virginia, maryland. let's go forward. here's the hometown forecast for manassas. by 11:00 this morning, it will be in the upper 60s there in prince william county. and then during the afternoon peaking in the upper 70s. a small chance of a passing thunderstorm coming through. then this evening, we'll get
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cooled down to the 60s by midnight. a look at your day planner and evening planner in ten minutes. danella? good morning. well, checking travel speeds, if you're traveling along route 50, making your way westbound at davidsonville road, 72 miles per hour. don't forget some of the pavement is still wet. you might want to slow down. 60 miles per hour making your way to bowie as you connect to the beltway. here's a live look now. taillights are as you travel on the outer loop. and your travel speed is 62 miles per hour, only taking nine minutes to get from route 50 to i-95. now back to you both. >> all right. thank you. breaking news right now. an afghan delegation sent to visit the sites where 16 civilians were killed over the weekend has come under fire from militants. the government delegation is visiting one of the two villages near kandahar where a u.s. soldier went on a shooting rampage on sunday. two brothers of after afghan president hamid karzai and
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senior security officials are part this delegation. it's unclear whether anyone has been wounded or killed in the attack which is reportedly still going on. the apparent retaliation by militants comes as the u.s. military looks to uncover why one of their soldiers went on a shooting spree in the first place. aaron gilchrist is at the news4 superscreen with more on what we are learning about that soldier. aaron? yeah, joe. the army has not yet released the name of the staff sergeant accused in the killings. we do know more about his background. the staff sergeant joined the army 11 years ago after the september 11 attacks. since then he has served three tours of duty in iraq. during one of those tours back in 2010 he suffered a traumatic brain injury after a vehicle he was riding in rolled over. military records show he was evaluated and allowed to return to duty. then in december of that year, last year, rather, we're told that he was deployed for his first tour of duty in afghanistan. then on february 1, something
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else happened here. he was assigned to a special operations unit for a village stability program. he would have worked with navy s.e.a.l.s. or green berets who visited nearby villages to establish a neighborhood watch program. on sunday, military leaders say that this soldier opened fire in those two villages in afghanistan, killing civilians. they were near the base in kandahar. 16 people were killed including nine children. the military says that the shooter is 38 years old. a married father of two. he is also a trained sniper. he was stationed at joint base lewis mcchord in washington state. his family has been moved on to that base now for their protection. sources also say army records show he was having problems at home before he left for afghanistan. now back to you. >> aaron grill cyst. thank you. breaking news in southeast asia now. at least 18 people are dead and dozens more are missing after a ferry packed with people cap sized in a river in southern
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bangladesh. so far rescuers pulled 35 people to safety after the ferry collided with a cargo boat and sank in the river. divers recovered bodies from inside the sunken ferry. two of the dead are a young woman and a baby she was cradling. police say the death toll is likely to rise as more bodies are feared trapped inside. it's a southern showdown in decision 2012. mississippi and alabama hold their presidential primaries today and contests to capture the republican conservative vote. polls show a tight race between newt gingrich and mitt romney. gingrich needs to win the south to keep his campaign alive. many observers think mitt romney is trying to hold on to his front-runner status. rick santorum is also looking for a win with his edge with evangelicals. delegates are also up for dprabs in hawaii and -- grabs in hawaii and the american samoa which hold talkses today. 5:05. a montgomery county middle school teacher once accused of having sex with a former student will try to get his job back.
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charges were dropped against scott spear on a technicality. he coached track part time at a high school. according to maryland law, if the student is above the age of consent, charges can only be pressed if the teacher is a full-time employee at the school where the student attends. in this case, the girl was 16 and a student at another school. his attorney says spear will meet with the school board today about getting his teaching and coaching positions reappointed. the civil trial stemming from that mass shooting on the virginia tech campus could go to the jury today. a judge is expected to decide today if the defense can question witnesses about school president charles steeger's reputation. the defense argues that the prosecution implied steeger lied about his actions the day of the shooting, and they should be able to counter that point. 32 people were killed during the massacre in april of 2 0. the families -- 2007. the families of two murdered students filed the suits. they're each seeks $100,000.
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today a group of transit workers will rally against what it calls the d.c.'s mass transit crisis. metro workers, bus drivers, and union members say they're upset with proposed fare increases, delays, and station shutdowns. the group says they're also upset with congress for plans to let the commuter tax benefit expire. the tax credit gives federal employees a subsidy to help pay for the public transit system. this morning's rally will begin at 8:00 at the farragut north and west metro stations. it is now 5:07. >> and we are -- campaigning to keep a teenager here in the united states. the push by thousands of people in montgomery county to to see keep a young college student from being deported. it is the popular new feature on apple's latest iphone. not everyone is thrilled with siri. why a man is taking the company to court. the rain is falling now. spring has sprung but so have my allergies.
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congratulations and good luck to the lady tapers. the university of maryland women's basketball team find out
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they'll play navy -- uh-oh, joe -- in the first round of the ncaa tournament. the terps coming off the acc tournament title and riding a seven-game winning streak. they earned a number-two seed in the big dance. the lady terps play navy saturday at 11:15 a.m. in college park. nice to have at least one terp team. >> exactly. >> go to the dance. >> wish them the best. >> indeed. >> really. 5:11. time again for weather & traffic on the 1s. tom kierein's in snowstorm center 4. tom? we're dancing through rain drops. we've had them passing through. there's the view from space with the radar in the green color. that's rain. right now getting light rain in southern maryland, northern neck, the eastern shore. and we'll have the forecast for today. temperatures into the 50s and we will is your day planner showing temperatures into the 70s this afternoon. overnight after afternoon and evening thunderstorms clearing out. danella, how's traffic? good morning. traveling along i-95 making your way out of baltimore, connecting to the beltway, here's a live look right now of travel speeds.
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as you make your way southbound past 100, you're at 67 miles per hour. still looking good making your way past 32 at 65 miles per hour. i'll give you a live look at 216. no issues. volume very light on i-95 as you travel north and south. southbound speeds, you're at 67 miles per hour. taking nine minutes from 216 to the beltway. taking the rails, they're open with no reported delays. on the metro, marc, and vre. now back to you both. >> thank you very much. 5:12 now. 62 degrees. ahead, another reason you may want to put that soda down. the health risks facing men who enjoy drinking the sugar-filled beverages. plus, a potential roadblock for the redskins in their efforts to rebuild. why the team may not have as much money to spend on free agents as it thought.
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welcome back at 5:15. this morning montgomery county residents and the council are joining forces to fight the federal government. the effort to stop the deportation of a college student is circling on the internet. we have more details. aaron? getting a lot of signature. the young man is jorge steven acuna, a college student. last wednesday, immigration agents took jorge and his family into custody. this video popped up on youtube. an effort to get jorge's story out and gain support. he came to the u.s. at 8 years old with his mother and father from colombia. they tried to get political asylum but were denied several times. they ignored an order to leave in 2008 and have been in the country illegally ever since. on facebook, you see it here, there's a page. and there's also a letter from the montgomery county council. this supports -- shows -- highlights that jorge was an
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honors student at northwest high school and is a semester away from graduating from montgomery college. the entire council now urging the white house and the department of homeland security to step in and stop the family's pending deportation. the online petition has nearly 5,000 signatures right now. and according to facebook, a group is organizing a rally, march, and vigil tomorrow. it will start at rockville town center around 3:00. right now the acunas are in a detention center on the eastern shore of maryland. their attorney has prepared an application to stay the decision, the deportation to try to slow the process down. a lot of people getting behind the student and his family. >> do we know how this was discovered by i.c.e.? how was the family discovered to be here illegally? >> the deportation order came in 2008. so they've been here 1999. after that order, they just stayed. so you have to assume that the system finally caught up with checking to see if they had filed the orderment and now, you
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know, here we are still here. this rally will start at about 3:00. at the same time, the montgomery county council is citing a case in florida where there was a teenager who was an -- a valedictorian at his high school. the government stepped in and said, hang on, we're going to exercise prosecutorial discretion. >> thank you very much. the group behind a viral video watched by 75 million people is responding to criticism about its campaign. >> we want to be as transparent as possible. >> nonprofit group invisible children created the kony 2012 documentary. now its ceo released another video to answer critics who question its mission and finances. he says the criticism has been difficult to hear but attributes it to a lack of familiarity with the organization. the original kony 2012 video was launched to spotlight atrocities committed by a ubegan dan warlord.
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-- ubeggandan warlord. in a report released yesterday, the board says joe paterno could have learned more when he learned of an alleged case of sex abuse involving a former assistant coach. a lawyer for the paterno family questioned the timing of the report. he died of lung cancer in january. former assistant coach jerry sandusky is waiting trial. he's charged with abusing ten boys over a 15-year span. two of the biggest web sites on line could be headed to court. yahoo! is suing facebook over patents. court documents show yahoo! claims facebook infringed on ten of its patents related to advertising, privacy controls, and social networking. yahoo! threatened to sue facebook last month. insisting that the social network license its patents. facebook says it's disappointed in yahoo! and calls the lawsuit puzzling. in the day ahead, a judge will hear from a mystery witness in the trial over nicollette sheridan's firing from the show "desperate housewives."
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the judge really wants to know what happened on wisteria lane. yesterday sheridan's attorney dropped a bombshell in the courtroom. in a twist he says he now has a witness who says he received a voicemail claiming emails about sheridan were destroyed in a cover-up. the trial continues. we'll see what happens. real-life drama there. >> we'll be following. 5:21 almost. let's go to tom kierein. he's joined us in the studio. tom? good morning. we've had overnight rain. and that has washed the pollen out of the air. we've had moderate tree pollen the last couple of days. it has improved overnight. this area in green is rain that's been moving through. right now the pockets of yellow, it's coming down harder now in the eastern shore. there from near easton to oxford and farther to the south and west. down toward northern neck and richmond and just to the southeast of fredericksburg. west to north, the clouds are beginning to clear in west virginia. still have a few sprinkles around the metro area. the pavement is wet this morning. temperatures are in the 50s to around 60 degrees all around the
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region, including west virginia, maryland, virginia, the eastern shore, up into pennsylvania. and we're going to stay on this mild side this morning. sunrise at 7:22. we'll jump into the 60s by 9:00. by noontime, mostly sunny, near 70. ought to hit the mid to upper 70s by mid-afternoon. then late afternoon into the early evening hours, might get an isolated thunderstorm popping up. and then by dawn tomorrow, we'll be all clear. down to near 50 and a sunny and warm day tomorrow. afternoon highs near 80 degrees. reality check -- average highs this time of year, mid 50s. so this is way above average. up again near 80 on thursday afternoon. then some cooler weather on friday with some rain perhaps coming through as a front moves in. but really not going to cool things too much. still back into the 70s on saturday. and sunday, a bit cooler, highs in the mid 60s as well as on monday with some sunshine returning. danella, how's traffic? good morning. checking speeds around the beltway, if you're taking the
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beltway, not seeing any issues. a lot of green, that means travel lanes are open. we'll take a live look, if you're taking the beltway in prince george's county making your way past pennsylvania avenue. traveling on the inner loop and outer loop, looking good right now. no major issues. as you travel southbound from pennsylvania avenue making your way toward the wilson bridge, 61 miles per hour. crossing over the wilson bridge, volume is picking up, but no major delays yet. travel lanes are open here. and you're clear making your way from the wilson bridge, heading into virginia to van dorn street. 58 miles per hour. only taking six minutes now to make that trip. on the rails, still no reported delays. looking excellent. eun? >> thank you. 5:22. a traffic alert for northern virginia drivers. this will affect those of you who have to go through the springfield mixing bowl. starting tonight the inner loop of the beltway will be closed overnight through friday. drivers will be detoured on to i-395 north, then to edsall road and back to i-395 south. from there you can access the
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inner loop and on toward tyson's corner. crews will be demolishing an old ramp over the highway, part of the 495 express lane project. the detour could set you back 15 to 20 minutes, maybe more. in news 12, men may want to cut -- in "news for your health," men may want to cut down on sugar-sweetened drinks. those who drank the drinks each day had a 20% increased risk of heart disease. now artificially sweetened drinks were not found to increase the risk. today president obama is giving his british counterpart a front row seat to march mad not. the president and british prime minister david cameron will attend the first game of the ncaa tournament tonight. mississippi valley state is playing western kentucky during the first four match-up in dayton, ohio. they'll also take part in an interview at halftime with sportscaster clark kellogg. part of cameron's official visit to the u.s.
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well, a week away there home started out on a sour note for t the wizards. they got handled by the spurs in texas. the spurs' tony parker had a game-high 31 points. the wizards have not won in san antonio since 1999. they continue their six-game roadtrip tonight against the defending national champions, dallas mavericks. the redskins are looking to rebuild the season but are going to have to do it without as much spending money as they thought they needed. according to multiple sources, the nfl is docking the team $36 million in salary cap space from the redskins, from -- rather front-loading contracts. the league says the team took advantage of 2010's uncapped season. that year they guaranteed albert haynesworth and deangelo hall a combined $36 million. the redskins' general manager, bruce allen, said, "every contract entered into by the club complied with the 2010 and 2011 collective bargaining
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agreements and, in fact, were approved by the nfl commissioner's office. we look forward to free agency, the draft, and the coming football season." despite the hit to their spending money, the redskins are expected to offer a big contract to the offseason's most desirable wide receiver. the redskins and the chicago bears are considered the front-runners in pursuit of vincent jackson. jackson, who plays for the chargers, is a free agent and will likely win a deal of $12 million or more a year. >> plus they'll try to get the quarter back. don't have him yet. 5:25. our time now. coming up, putting the election spotlight on the south. what's at stake today for the republican presidential hopefuls as voters head to the polls. a big bust for d.c. police.
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looking at the stories making headlines right now, militants have struck in afghanistan this morning targeting a government delegation in kandahar. that delegation was visiting the site where 16 civilians were killed by an american soldier. voters in three states will be heading to the polls this morning for the latest presidential primaries. polls show a tight race between
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mitt romney and newt gingrich who does need a win today to keep his campaign alive, observers think. thousands in montgomery county are pushing to keep a 19-year-old college student in the u.s. sthiechbed on to an online petition and are organizing a rally and vigil to draw attention to jorge steven acunia, facing deportation with his family. much more throughout the morning. first, good morning to you, i'm eun yang. >> good morning, i'm jeb. welcome back, tuesday the 13th day of march. we'll take a live look outside. we have 62 degrees right now. 5:29 in the morning. cloudy skies and some rain around the region. >> i love this warm weather, tom. >> yeah, it's been a gift. feeling more like may than march. we've had also some earlier than average pollen in the air. the average count yesterday was in the moderate range. that overnight rain has improved the pollen count. take a look at the last 12
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hours. the moving green is light rain, getting a few sprinkles around the metro area. there's steadier rain in southern maryland, the northern neck and eastern shore. it's beginning to clear now out into the shenandoah valley and western maryland. we'll have the clearing taking place as the morning progresses and temperatures now all around the region are mild. we are around 60 degrees. around the metro area, montgomery, prince george's county, arlington, fairfax counties, just about all of virginia, maryland, and west virginia in the 50s to near 60. in the low to mid 50s where they're getting steady rain now between easton and cambridge. st. michael's. sunrise at 7:22. by 9:00, partly cloudy and temperatures should be climbing to the 60s by then. into the mid 60s by mid morning. for the lunch hour you may want your lunch in the park. we'll have temperatures near 70 degrees by then. and we'll have lots of sunshine. and then by late afternoon, we will have perhaps a passing thundershower. before then, though,
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temperatures should climb to the mid to upper 70s. like 20 to 25 degrees above the average high for this time of year. we could get an isolated thunderstorm popping up late afternoon and into the early evening hours. a look at your evening planner, that will be in ten minutes. now a look at your tuesday traffic. good morning, danella. good morning. if you're making the commute right now, taking a closer look at the dulles toll road. your volume still light in this area. especially traveling out of the wolftrap area, traveling eastbound and westbound on the toll road. you see here no major inow. smooth commute for you. you're at 55 miles per hour from hunter mill to the beltway, seven minutes to make the trip in total. over to the rails, checking and they still look good. no reported delays along the metro, marc, and vre. traveling along i-95, i am seeing slow spots for you. especially out of dale city. i'm back this ten minutes with a closer look at i-95. for now, over to you, eun. >> thank you. today conservative voters weigh in on decision 2012. both mississippi and alabama
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hold primaries in the republican race for president. tracie potts joins us live from capitol hill with a preview of these closely watched races. good morning. >> reporter: good morning. closely watched, and they are close. we've been watching the polls in alabama and mississippi. newt gingrich who has had challenges in recent states has been win something of them. but mitt romney is within striking distance. these southern states, alabama and mississippi, are really sort of must-wins for newt gingrich. he hasn't said he'll drop out if he doesn't win, but it certainly would raise questions about his campaign continuing if he doesn't. mitt romney who has had challenges with southern conservative voters with the party's base is hoping to win one or both of those states. romney talking yesterday about hunting and -- and barbecue and eating dprits. voters down there say it's about a lot more than that. they want to hear about the economy, about gas prices. gingrich and santorum were at an energy forum yesterday.
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now interestingly, this is sort of the crux of the support base for santorum. those evangelical voters and 3/4 in alabama and mississippi have described themselves that way. he is not nearly as close to the top of the polls as we've seen from gingrich and romney. in fact, taking a look at alabama, romney and gingrich are within one or two points of each mother mississippi. the polls all over the place, romney up by eight and one, gingrich up by two. back to you. >> thank you. breaking news right now. an afghan delegation sent to visit the sites where 16 civilians were killed over the weekend has come under fire from militants. at least one afghan soldier is dead, and two others injured. the delegation was at a memorial service for the victims when the militants opened fire. two brothers of afghan president hamid karzai and senior security officials are part of this delegation. the taliban has said that it would kill and behead in response to the rampage by a u.s. soldier that killed 16
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people including nine children. president obama has condemned the shooting but says he is committed to bringing u.s. forces home over the next two years. the president says the killings will not speed up troop withdrawal plans. the united states and nato allies intend to turn over security control to the afghans by the end of 2014. the u.s. is expected to reduce forces to about 68,000 by the end of september. right now there are roughly 91,000 u.s. soldiers in afghanistan. now to a news4 exclusive this morning. the remains of a fallen marine are in his hometown of purcellville in western loudoun county. marine corps captain michael quinn died when two military helicopters crashed in arizona last month. the 28-year-old was training for a mission to afghanistan. last night family, friends, and fellow soldiers lined the sidewalks for a procession from reagan national to his hometown. quinn's father spoke exclusively to news4. >> he died doing what he wanted
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to do. he was training hard for a very difficult mission that we asked these marines in our service to do our country's bidding. >> quinn leaves behind a fiancee. the family will hold a funeral service for quinn next week. he will be laid to rest in arlington national cemetery. culpeper county's head prosecutor is stepping down today amid accusations of misconduct. commonwealth's attorney gary close announced the resignation in a letter to the newspaper "the star exponen" yesterday. a u.s. district judge overturned a conviction in a 1996 murder. he says that close used a jailhouse snitch and weak testimony to convict 15-year-old michael hash of the murder when there was no physical evidence. hash, who is now 32, could be set free if he's not retried within six months. this morning a virginia mother will serve no jail time in the death of her son. dr. karen murphy pled guilty to two misdemeanor charges of child neglect. she left her 2-year-old son in the back seat of the family
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minivan for more than seven hours last june. murphy must complete 400 hours of community service and serve six years' probation. prosecutors agreed to the plea deal saying murphy's pain over the loss of her son ryan was punishment enough. d.c. police are stepping up their efforts to stop an increase of street robberies throughout the district. there are -- they are now going after a new target. police raided businesses that sold -- rather, that buy stolen iphones, ipads, and electronics and resell them. in a major undercover operation, police arrested two dozen people at 12 businesses that are suspected of selling stolen electronic devices. >> if you are in any way, shape, or form involved with the robberies, the breaking into cars, breaking into people's homes to steal items, to pass them along, to resell them or to fence them in any way, shape, or form, we are going to find you and arrest you. this is not going to stop. >> every single d.c. resident has a right to walk our
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neighborhoods in safety and confidence. >> one operation wrapped up yesterday. police say they will continue their crackdown. as of monday there has been a 15% decrease in the crimes over the past 30 years. it is now 5:37. 61 degrees. searching for answers. what we're learning about the young man accused of planning a shooting rampage at the university of maryland. and out of this world, the unique view of the northern lights. you may want to grab the umbrella this morning. ♪ it's the way you bring out the sun. ♪ sunny d! ♪ it's the way you make it all fun. ♪
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hundreds more in your wallet year after year. feed me! saving you money -- now, that's progressive. call or click today. take a look at this amazing picture of the northern lights. you can see the aurora shining brightly across the earth. now this was taken from the international space station. right now the crew is on a mission to record and view the northern lights. some of the reddish glows reach all the way up to the space station's level. what a gorgeous, gorgeous picture. >> indeed. >> of course, that's the nice place to take a picture from, too. not everyone can do it. >> all right. let's check the forecast now. we had rain to start our day with. now meteorologist tom kierein's telling us about a warmup.
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good morning. good morning, temperatures going to be about 20 degrees above average for this time of year. right now, we're dealing with the aftermath of rain. the pavement is wet. take extra time and slow down a bit. things are slick this morning. still getting steady rain south and east of washington. a few sprinkles in the nearby suburbs around the metro area. skies are clearing to the west out of the mountains. temperatures around the region in the green zone are in the mid to upper 50s. and that includes petworth, bladensburg, clinton, centreville, ft. belvoir, and kensington. and for the day, here's your day planner, sunrise at 7:22. a partly sunny mid morning. and we'll have a mostly sunny midday. by noon, near 70. upper 70s by mid-afternoon. then late afternoon, early evening, we might get a passing thundershower. after that, we'll clear out near 60 at midnight. a look at the week and weekend coming up. if you're traveling i-95
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making your way northbound, seeing some delays especially heading out of stafford toward quantico. travel speed in this area, about 31 mile-per-hour. now as you continue i-95 northbound at the occoquan, hitting the brakes just a bit. it's not so bad just yet. travel speed 59 miles per hour. making your way from the occoquan to the beltway. right now, that trip is taking 11 minutes, but congestion is building. back to you all. >> danella, thanks. our time is now 5:42. up in flames, the search is on to find the people who torched this school playground set. plus, here is one member of the obama family who feels he needs more attention. oh dear...
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you're doing it! aren't they doing great?! hiiiiiii!! come sweat with me! keep going richard. keep sweating!! geico. fifteen minutes could save you sweat! sweat! fifteen percent or more on car insurance. we're learning more about what led up to the arrest of a university of maryland honors student accused of planning a
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shooting rampage. 19-year-old alexander song is in the hospital getting a psychiatric evaluation right now. university police told authorities about song's disturbing comments after chatting with him on line saturday night. one comment read, "i'm thinking of going on a shooting rampage around campus until police kill me." by sunday morning, police set up surveillance on song and arrested him on the college park campus. those who knew him say the news sounds out of character. >> i was honestly really shocked because he's -- he seems so normal. a very good student. he participateded ein class ale time. he seemed like another kid in the program, another student at maryland. he's one of us. so i -- yeah, i can't believe it. >> officers say song was shaking and crying when they arrested him. he admitted he was stressed out. it's also not his first interaction with police. police questioned him a week ago
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after responding to a person shouting. christopher lee carlson appeared in federal court in tacoma, washington, yesterday. u.s. marshals were expected to move him to portland after he mailed letters with a suspicious white powder. several lawmakers and members of the media received letters that contained the pouder that turned out to be harmless. senator barbara mikulski was one of the recipients of the letters. investigators are trying to figure out the cause of a fire that destroyed a playground in philadelphia -- if n a philadelphia suburb. camera video at st. alphonsis school captured the fire as it engulfed the area. three eyewitnesses reported seeing three people on the playground before the fire. the school says it will rebuild and rededicate the playground in memory of a teacher. a utility company has agreed to pay $70 million to compensate for an explosion that killed eight people. take a look at this dramatic video of the fire.
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the gas pipeline blast destroyed 38 homes south of san francisco back in 2010. pacific gas and electric and the city of san bruno announced the settlement. the money will be -- the money will establish a nonprofit group to help the community as it continues to recover. the money is in addition to the utility's agreement to fund repairs to the city's infrastructure and the restoration of the neighborhood. both u.s. senators from illinois plan to appeal a denial for federal disaster aid after a deadly tornado hit their state. the severe storms last month killed seven people in five counties. the federal emergency management agency, fema, assessed the damage. it said that it will determine -- it determined that federal assistance was not necessary. state leaders dispute that claim saying damage is in the tens of millions and well beyond what state budgets can handle. a substitued bus driver is off the job after leaving two
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students on the bus for hours. 7 and 5-year-olds, brothers, were left on the bus from 7:50 in the morning for 1:25 in the afternoon yesterday. they say the bus driver did not follow protocol to make sure that the bus was empty. according to the boys' mother, both fell asleep on the way to school and woke up to an empty bus. the door was unlocked on the bus, and they were able to get off and walk in to school. police in anne arundel county with trying to track down an underground dogfighting ring. so far two dogs have been discovered with severe bite wounds in the brooklyn park area. police believe the animals were used to violently train pit bulls to fight. the animal hospital is caring for the injured dogs free of charge. >> you could see the marks on her from where she had been bitten by other dogs from her tail to nose. she was full of them. >> i hope that they find whoever did this to them and, you know, that they'll be tortured as much as these guys were.
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>> the dogs will be placed with rescue groups. veterinarians are confident that both will find permanent homes. the d.c. council is considering a bill that would strengthen child sex abuse laws. the judiciary committee held a public hearing on the legislation yesterday. now the human services committee will go over the details. the bill would require anyone who witnesses a case of child sex abuse to report it to the authorities. the current d.c. law requires only professionals such as counselors and teachers to report child sex abuse cases. d.c. council member phil mendelsohnn introduced the bill in the wake of the scandal at penn state. critics argue that the proposed legislation is too broad and would violate attorney/client privilege and spousal privilege rights. a budget battle is waging in maryland's general assembly today. house republicans in annapolis will release an alternative to the current proposal. democratic governor martin o'malley's budget plan calls for raising state income taxes. it would also split teacher pension costs with local
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governments over four years. then the house can consider modifications after the senate takes up the legislation this week. the state of maryland is expected to pass on some of the cost of teacher pensions to the counties in the state. now montgomery county is trying to soften that blow. county executive ike leggett and council president roger berliner are asking that the costs be divided more evenly. in a letter to county delegates, they said that both the county and the local school board should share the cost. they say that would force school boards to control costs better. the school board has not yet commented on this proposal. president obama will deliver an address on american energy this week. the event will be held in largo, maryland, on thursday. the address comes at a critical time when economists say rising gasoline prices are dragging the country's economic recovery. 5:51. let's check the energy in the sky now. tom is here looking at our weather forecast. >> flip-flops in march. so wrong. >> i actually -- >> not right. we're going to get plenty of
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that kind of weather later. it certainly is unusually warm here setting up for the week. right now, we're -- seeing the aftermath of the rain. the pavement is still wet as we've had light showers come through the metro area. that area in yellow, coming down moderately now. raining moderately, the northern neck of virginia and on the eastern shore. it's beginning to clear out from the west. and temperatures now are uniformly in the low 60s across much of virginia to upper 50s near 60 around washington, fairfax, arlington, montgomery, prince george's counties. getting that steadier rain, low 50s on the eastern shore. sunrise at 7:22. we'll have sunshine breaking out mid morning and a sunny middle of the day. near 70 by noon. then mid to upper 70s during the middle of the afternoon. then maybe thundershowers popping up late afternoon and early evening. a small chance of that. otherwise, we'll clear by late evening, down in the low 60s by midnight. and then by dawn tomorrow, near 50. sunny and warm on wednesday and
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thursday. both days near an astounding 80 degrees. and then cooler weather on friday with maybe some showers coming in. then the weekend looking partly sunny. saturday and sunday. and turning cooler by sunday and into monday next week. last week, i traveled to herndon and visited the hutchison elementary school and talked to these students about weather. i want to thank the teacher on the right here in this last photo for the invitation. judy baldwin is the principal. they've got over 800 students in this school. most of the students are english as second language. they are working hard developing english language proficiency and academic schools. doing a great job. i had a lot of fun talking to them all about different types of weather last week. danella, how's traffic? good morning, traveling along i-270, you're hitting slow spots especially out of urbana. you can take a live look at the traffic flow now. slow out of 85. delays continue southbound as you make your way to clarksburg. you're at 27 miles per hour
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passing route 80. the good news is once you pass clarksburg road at this point, travel lanes are open. seeing nothing but green as you make your way toward the spur. shady grove, cars -- traffic is increasing. but no major delays at all. and your lanes are open as you head to the spur. no problems connecting to the beltway. joe, over to you. >> thank you very much. a traffic alert for virginia drivers. you'll need make a few loops to get around the springfield mixing bowl overnight this week. beginning tonight, crews will close the inner loop of the beltway to demolish an old ramp. drivers have to detour on to 395 north, gets off on edsall and get back on 395 south. from there you can access the inner loop and continue toward tyson's corner. the construction is part of the i-495 express lanes project. and the detour could set you back 15 to 20 minutes. sticky gas pedals are back, this time in several ford models. safety regulators are investigating tauruses and mercury sables accelerating on
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their own. as many as 1.9 million cars made between 2001 and 2006 may be affected. investigators say a faulty cruise control cable could be to blame. toyota had to recall more than 14 million cars worldwide after it discovered acceleration problems back in 2010. a plane made an emergency landing at dulles airport. a mechanical warning light came on the cockpit and the pilot declared an emergency after taking off from reagan national airport. the usairways express flight was headed to philadelphia yesterday afternoon. it landed safely 30 minutes later at dulles airport. fire officials inspected the plane and gave the all clear. but the airline put the crew and passengers on another airplane just to be safe. soon it could be illegal in maryland to smoke in a car with a child 8 years old or younger. the state senate approved a bill to protect children from secondhand smoke. lawmakers also blocked two related amendments, one would have made smoking in a car with a child a secondary offse
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which would mean that police would have to pull over a driver for another violation first. the other amendment rejected would have prevented a child from riding in a car that someone had smoked at all. st. patrick's day is this saturday. for those of you who want to have a few drink, there is a program offering free cab rides home. the washington regional alcohol program is offering its sober ride service again this year. it will be available from 6:00 p.m. on saturday until 6:00 a.m. on sunday. anyone in the district and surrounding counties can get up to a $30 cab ride home. just call 1-800-200-taxi for that free cab ride. a parade of elephants will march down the streets of d.c. today. elephant, clowns, and animals from ringling brothers barnum and bailey circus will take part in tonight's parade. the event will kick off the latest circus called fully charged. the show is in town thursday through sunday. and the elephant parade will begin around 8:00 in garfield park at the intersection of
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virginia and new jersey avenues in southeast. it will travel west on independence avenue, north on 3rd street, and arrive at the verizon center at 9:00. very fun. >> yeah. absolutely. watch where you step. >> exactly. you've heard the saying every dog has its day. >> yes, indeed. the first dog, bo obama, knows how to steal the spotlight. a reporter was filming in front of the white house when bo obama made a rather surprise appearance. the portuguese water dog is used to taking center stage, though. last month, he surprised some tourists at the white house by showing up for an unannounced meet and greet in the blue room. he also showed up for a skit with the first lady and late night talk show host jimmy fallon. we know bo can probably speak portuguese, but not sure about the spanish. >> that's right. we're not sure about that. although i'm sure bo's saying, why are these people at my house? always in my way. >> exactly. this is my land. please get out of the way. stay with us, "news4 today" at 6:00 continues. we'll have weather & traffic on the 1s.
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breaking news. in afghanistan this morning, the first active retaliation for the hoif


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